Matt Moore, The silent assassin. Matt Moore has been at the University of Virginia for what seems like a decade now. With all the talent at UVA, people sometimes forget how important of a piece Moore is to the Cavaliers. With this being his final season in Virginia, Matt Moore and his Cavalier teammates look to become the first three-peat’ champion since Princeton from 1996-98.
Matt Moore played high school lacrosse at Garnet Valley in Glen Mills, Pennsylvania. He was a four time All-State player and a three time All-American. He holds several school records for his playoff heroics, including season points with 68 and points in a game with 7. He was also a decorated soccer player as well, being an All-League Honorable Mention player during his junior year, earning First Team All-County and All-League player during his senior season.
As a freshman at Virginia, Moore made an immediate impact, starting 17 of 18 games for the Cavaliers at midfield and scored 19 goals and 34 points overall, en route to winning ACC Freshman of the Year. His 34 points were second all time by a freshman midfielder in program history. Moore finished the season strong scoring 4 goals and dishing out 4 assists and being named to the All-ACC tournament team.
There was no sophomore slump for Moore as he led the ACC in scoring, and set a program record with 89 points. It was his first full season at attack, after switching from midfield after his freshman year. His scoring touch didn’t end in the regular season either, he scored 21 points during the NCAA tournament, scoring 7 points in the first round, then scoring 2 goals in the second, including the game winner against Maryland.
He saved his best for the final two games, scoring 4 points against Duke, and then 5 points in the National Title game against Yale. His strong season earned him All-ACC, All-Tournament Team, and Honorable Mention All-American accolades.
Winning a national title is always special, but for Moore, the Pennsylvania native, it was definitely a special moment to do it in his home state.
“It was a perfect ending to a great story, Coming to a bunch of (Philadelphia) Eagles games, I’ve dreamed of this since I was a kid, I really still can’t believe it. It’s just an awesome thing being here with my teammates, celebrating.”
– Matt Moore
In the shortened 2020 season, Moore started all eight games and finished 2nd in the ACC in points per game with 5.83. He finished the season as a 2nd Team All-American. Virginia at the time was 4-2, and hoping to defend its National Championship before Covid-19 shut everything down.
“It was a tough time because we didn’t know when we were going to be able to play again. But everyone was in the same position, everyone’s season got canceled, so we were all like, let’s start working for the next season.”
– Matt Moore
When the 2021 season finally did come around, Moore and the Cavaliers went to work. While Moore may not have been the top scorer on the team, he still finished with 79 points, which was 10th best in the nation. He scored in every single game and had 15 multipoint games. Once again, he saved his best for the end of the season, scoring 6 points in the National Championship game vs Maryland, helping Virginia repeat as national champions.
“Matt Moore’s performance was heroic, the pain he was playing through. There was no question he was playing, he was going to let it all hang out there.”
– Lars Tiffany, Virginia Head Coach
Moore isn’t the flashiest player, hell, he might not even be considered the best player on his team the last two years, but when he wants to take control of a game, it’s truly hard to stop him. Many people are speculating that Moore could potentially be a PLL caliber player.
While all the pro talk is nice,and even with all the talk of a three peat, Moore is trying to enjoy his final season at Charlottesville.
“I’ve talked to a lot of people about coming back to school, and what are the effects of, kind of overall careers, and I think everyone says go back to school. It’s the best time of your life, and I agree with that.”
– Matt Moore